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City West Water is to change the way water and recycled water meter assemblies are installed on new residential properties in its service area from 1 February.

The theft of brass and copper fittings and meters is a common issue on construction sites and results in builders and owners carrying high reinstatement costs.

The changes will also help further reduce the low risk of cross-contaminated water supply in areas where recycled water is available.

City West Water’s Acting General Manager, Customer Experience, Nathan Bennett, said the changes were implemented following discussions with the local construction industry.

“We’ve listened to plumbers, developers and builders about the need for these changes and to make installing new water meters more efficient and cost-effective,” Mr Bennett said.

“One of the key changes is that full connections, including installing the tap upstands and associated plumbing, will now be made by the builder’s plumber.

“The new meters will now be manufactured out of durable plastic which should also help reduce theft.”

Mr Bennett said since plumbers, not City West Water, were now installing the taps and upstands, the changes would result in further savings during the application stage.

“Fees for single residential applications will be reduced by $50.35 in drinking water only areas and by $135.10 in areas where recycled water is also available,” Mr Bennett said.

Other key changes to the meter installation process include:
– The new potable plastic meters will have an integral dual check valve, meaning that a separate backflow device will no longer be required
– A new purple tag will be installed with the locking pin, advising that it cannot be removed
– In areas with both recycled and potable water supply, the old bypass connection between the garden taps will no longer be used
– A new fitting installed by City West Water allows pressurisation using only potable water – and eliminates the connection to the recycled water tap. The fitting includes provision for a temporary tap to be installed during construction by the builder or plumber

More information on the new process, including an instructional video, can be found here.

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